People all over the country are answering their phones to find a threatening debt collector on the other end.
One man is dealing with these callers, and what he learned is helpful advice for all of us.
Frightening Call from "Law Firm"
Sam Powers received a frightening call on his cell phone, claiming someone was filing a civil complaint against him.
"When I first listened to the call, my heart went in my throat and I said 'Oh my gosh, what did I do?'" he wondered.
The woman on the phone said she was with a law firm, and told him that "failure to respond may result in immediate legal action." Powers didn't know what to do.
"I got a little information online, but I couldn't find this law firm, couldn't find any information at all."
We checked the number that called him, and found no company connected to it. We found only complaints about similar threatening calls.
An attorney who specializes in debt calls calls these"zombie debit collectors,"and says they try to scare hard working people into paying debts that may not be theirs.
Brian Parker, a Michigan attorney who specializes in debt collections, says these calls are very common. "If you think about it, the best people to go after are those with a good credit report. They prey on those with no debt, because those are the people that are going to be able to pay."
What You Can Do
The good news is you don't have to talk to a debt collector on the phone. You have the right, under law, to demand that they send it to you, in the good old fashioned us mail.